for wordpressI recently had the very distinct honor of traveling to Washington, DC on behalf of the American Job Center and other Montgomery County dignitaries as well as the Fort Campbell Garrison Command. The article from the Leaf Chronicle is below:

“Fort Campbell and Montgomery County, Tennessee live side-by-side as neighbors and partners. On December 4, Montgomery County was of only seven Army communities worldwide to be recognized in Washington, D.C. by the U.S. Army with an Army Community Partnership Award – an award that celebrates partnerships that enhance Army readiness and strengthens community bonds.

The award, presented by the Under Secretary of the Army Ryan McCarthy, officially recognized the partnership between Fort Campbell, the American Job Center and Montgomery County, TN for success in connecting more than 11,000 transitioning service members with thousands of post-separation local, national, and international employment opportunities. From fiscal year 2012 to fiscal year 2016, Fort Campbell’s transition assistance employment initiatives have reduced the U.S. Army’s Unemployment Compensation cost by more than $350,000,000, while supporting transitioning service members with their employment needs.

“Supporting service members and their families is a priority in our community. We are honored to receive this award and will continue to assist soldiers in making positive transitions into the civilian job market. The military strengthens our community’s job market and we are indebted to the sacrifices they make.” stated Montgomery County Mayor Jim Durrett.

Fort Campbell Garrison Commander Colonel Kuchan commented, “This is great formal recognition of what we all do on a day to day basis. Assistant Chief of Staff for Installation Management. Lt. General Gwen Bingham put it best when she said there is nothing that we do on Fort Campbell that we do alone; it’s in partnership with the communities outside of the gates.” Kuchan also mentioned that the tighter the budget becomes, the more important it is to work hand-in-hand with the community.

“Working with transitioning military personnel is a critical component of economic development and is crucial to the continued success of Clarksville-Montgomery County. This award is indicative of the work we do to support our soldiers,” said Marla Rye, president of Workforce Essentials.

Fred Workman, deputy program manager at the Fort Campbell Soldier for Life Program explained, “What sets Fort Campbell apart is our ability to build solid relationships with our service members and the business community. We won the 2016 Connections Award for the highest rate of connections between soldiers and employers and the Department of Defense named our Facebook Page one of the best social media sites in 2017. We consistently host job fairs, large and small, partnering with local, regional and national employers.”

I want to commend each and every one who touches this program in any aspect.  This is a very successful grant thanks to dedicated employees.  I appreciate everyone’s efforts and the wonderful teamwork among partners.  You each are yielding continued success!

Marla W. Rye, President